Giving Compass' Take:

· Global Citizen tells the story of a trans activist from Mexico fighting for global change after facing death threats and poor treatment when applying for asylum in the US.

· How can government institutions provide better support and placement for the LGBT community? How can philanthropy help support this movement?

· Read about the fight for transgender rights in the US.


Derogatory comments, blatant job and housing discrimination, violence — these are the norms of living while transgender in Mexico.

But when a candidate for governor in Baja California began making bigoted remarks about transgender people and said they didn’t deserve rights in 2011, Ishalaa Ortega, a long-time and well-known trans activist, fought back.

Ortega, from Tijuana, condemned the candidate swiftly and frequently through her various platforms, and called on people to uphold universal human rights.

That’s when the death threats arrived.

“I started receiving these phone calls,” she said, referring to people who threatened to kill and otherwise silence her. “They were scary, but I didn’t consider it a reason to leave. But when someone approached me to repeat to my face what I was receiving in phone calls, that’s when I became afraid of getting killed.”

Within a month, Ortega realized she had to flee for her safety.

There are 32 federal entities in Mexico, and only one — Mexico City — has legal protections for transgender people.

Read the full article about this trans activist by Joe McCarthy at Global Citizen.